Adolescent Idealism

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Warren Jeffs gets love letters in his prison cell, some of them written by the young girls he married-twelve, thirteen, fourteen years old. It's pathetic and a little nauseating to think of a pretty young woman wiling her tender life away with dreamed-up concoctions of celestial bliss with a convicted felon. Yet the desires of fundamentalist girls aren't too different from the fantasies of other young women, who are notoriously dreamy in adolescence. Such has been the subject of novels and plays throughout literary history: Romeo and Juliet, Kathy and Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights, Maria and Tony in West Side Story. As long as Warren Jeffs is beyond reach-whether in a prison cell or in a grave-fusty, fickle reality can't interfere with the pristine ideal.

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